Identity fraud: one of the fastest growing types of crime

29 april 2019

Identity fraud is on the rise, as reported by the CMI, the Central Identity Theft and Error Reporting Centre for The Netherlands. There is no conclusive explanation for the huge increase in identity theft, but it’s no secret that there has been a substantial increase and that swift action must be taken. What are the statistics? And what can we do to curb identity fraud?

Identity fraud by numbers

Over the past few years, identity fraud has really soared. In 2017, the CMI received 3,000 reports. Two years prior, there had only been 800 complaints, according to the Central Identity Theft and Error Reporting Centre. Over the course of 2018, approximately 3,300 reports of identity fraud were filed, but it is safe to assume that not nearly every instance gets reported.


One of the most important factors in ID theft is that it is becoming less common for people to physically identify themselves. Internet activity plays a big part in this. In the past, an ID document would have to literally be lost or stolen from a back pocket, but nowadays a copy is enough for criminals to do their damage.


How do criminals commit ID fraud?

Fraudsters closely study the habits of individuals and companies to determine their identities. That way, they attempt to gather information about identities and then abuse that information in a variety of ways.

Collecting this information is child’s play for these criminals. By hacking poorly-secured administrations, searching the internet, or simply stealing documents, it’s easy to enough to steal the identity of another person/business.

‘ID fraud prevention is better than cure’

As an organisation, you want nothing at all to do with identity fraud. And for precisely that reason, it is important to avoid it altogether, rather than having to fix the issue later. The ramifications of ID fraud are hefty: it costs time, money, and can cause significant damage to your company’s image.

In 2017, it happened to a business owner in the province of North Holland. Someone ordered tens of thousands of euro worth of laptops and other items in his name. Ultimately, the culprit caused between 150,000 and 200,000 euro worth of damage. This brought the business owner very close to having to sell his home. It also caused him to lose some of his valuable credibility and goodwill with clients and suppliers. Truly, the internet never forgets.

 

Solutions against identity fraud

It is so important to be aware of all the risks that come along with identity fraud, especially as a company. Nowadays there are thankfully many ways to curb identity theft.

DataChecker offers solutions for the online identification of customers, suppliers, and potential employees. They are a great way to avoid identity fraud in the future.

Would you like to know more about DataChecker’s available solutions? We would love to talk to you about the possibilities we have to offer your company.

Get in touch